Sunday, 7 July 2019

Code 7/7: Police warns as cult group plans to celebrate anniversary today

Mohammed Adamu

AS cult groups from some parts of the country plan to hold a festival of cultism today, police authorities in Lagos, Oyo and Kwara states have warned them against holding such celebrations in the states.

The cult groups have used past celebrations of July 7 code-named 7/7 to either initiate new members or visit violent vengeance on perceived opponents.

Investigation revealed that previous festivals in notable areas of Ilorin, the Kwara State capital, were trailed by violence and criminal activities among members of cult groups.

Some of the notable areas in the state capital, where the cult activities were witnessed in the recent past included Ibrahim Taiwo road, Kulende, Sabo Oke, Agaka, Eruda, Agbo Oba, Stadium Road, Irewolede I and II and Oyun areas, among other communities.

The violent cult activities, which are usually led by students of both secondary and higher institutions in the state, also involved artisans like vulcanizers, bricklayers, commercial motorcycle riders, tricycle operators, among others.

But the Kwara State Police Command said that it had put in place adequate security measures throughout the state to check the development which it described as unacceptable.

The state Police Commissioner, Kayode Egbetokun, in a statement at the weekend, advised students to shun any suspicious gathering of young men and women in their environments and report any suspicious movements to the police.

Similarly, the police in Oyo State, on Saturday, warned secret cult groups popularly known as Aiye and Eiye confraternities against unlawful gathering.

The police in the state gave the warning in a statement by its Public Relations Officer (PPRO), SP Olugbenga Fadayi, in Ibadan.

Fadayi quoted the state's Commissioner of Police, Shina Olukolu, as saying that the command had been notified that  "Aiye and Eiye '' held their annual celebrations on July 7 and August 8 respectively  across the states in the South-West zone.

He said that the police in Oyo State were on top of the situation and were working to clamp down on the aforementioned secret cult groups.

The police spokesperson quoted the commissioner as warning the cultists not to attempt to test the "will and capacity" of the police and other security agencies in the state to respond to and deal with any threat to peace and order.

"The command enjoins the people of the state to go about their lawful businesses as the police will not give any breathing space to these unscrupulous elements to create chaos in the state,'' Fadayi said.

Also, the  police  in Lagos State, on Saturday, warned  suspected  cultists across the state with a  "show of force exercise"  in different  parts of the state to prevent  any breakdown of law and order.

Armed policemen were on patrol in many parts of the state to show suspected cult members of their readiness in case of any attempt to foment trouble today.

Sunday Tribune also gathered that the state Commissioner of Police, Zubairu Muazu, has warned parents to call their children to order as the police would not spare anyone planning to cause trouble in the state.

The state police boss also directed all area commanders and divisional police officers to ensure regular patrol from Saturday till the end of Sunday.

A senior police officer, who spoke with the Sunday Tribune on condition of anonymity, said "we had a show of force exercise  in different parts of the state today [Saturday] to warn suspected cultists."

The police chief also added that "the area commanders have been directed to ensure that they ensure  regular patrol across their divisions and area command from today (Saturday) till the end of Sunday.

Parts of Lagos notorious for cult killings during such celebration in the last few years include Ikorodu,  Ajah, Somolu, Bariga  and  Ayobo.

This story first appeared on Palito Media as : Breaking: Police Warn As Cultists Plan To Celebrate '7/7 Anniversary' Today